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Managing Health and Productivity Outcomes Through Highly Rated but Underused Practices

Use of an on-site consultant is an effective way employers can integrate early disability reporting and disability duration guidelines, according to a new white paper from Standard Insurance Company ("The Standard"), titled The Future of Absence and Disability Management, Part 2: Continuing the Conversation. This white paper is a companion piece to The Future of Absence and Disability Management (published in December 2011) and continues to explore major trends in managing absence and disability by highlighting two health and productivity management (HPM) practices that are highly rated but underused by employers.1

The white paper asserts that the deployment of an on-site consultant can result in positive health and productivity outcomes by maximizing the following two HPM practices:

1) Early disability reporting — This practice involves reporting an employee’s absence or disability claim as soon as possible. Early disability reporting can work together with a transitional return to work (RTW) program to help shorten the duration of an absence or disability.

2) Disability duration guidelines — These guidelines help predict the anticipated duration of a disability and serve as a standardized method of assessing the effectiveness of an RTW program.

“Ideally, those HPM practices that employers find to be the most effective in meeting their intended goals should be the most widely used,” said Michael Klachefsky, national practice leader, Workplace PossibilitiesSM for The Standard and author of both white papers. “Based on a revealing employer survey conducted by the Integrated Benefits Institute, this is not the case. It is important that employers recognize this discrepancy and seek a solution to managing absences and disabilities that integrates such highly rated practices as early disability reporting and disability duration guidelines. Workplace Possibilities represents that solution.”

Learn more at the SALGBA National Conference

Klachefsky will be speaking on this best practice approach to managing absence and disability at the upcoming State and Local Government Benefits Association (SALGBA) National Conference. The session, titled “Workplace Possibilities: Improving Employer Productivity in the Public Sector,” will take place from 1:45 p.m. to 2:45 p.m. PDT on Monday, April 16, 2012, at the Hyatt Regency in San Francisco. Using two public-sector examples, Klachefsky will outline the total cost of employee absence to an employer and how an integrated disability management model, including an on-site consultant, is an effective approach to reducing costs and increasing productivity.

To download the white paper or to learn more about The Standard’s Workplace Possibilities program, visit workplacepossibilities.com.

About the Workplace Possibilities program

The Workplace PossibilitiesSM program is a unique, proactive approach to helping employers prevent and manage employee absence and disability. A Workplace Possibilities consultant helps to connect employees with their health management programs and identifies opportunities to keep at-risk employees on the job or return to work faster. By doing so, the program delivers rapid and measurable reductions in absence- and disability-related costs. For tips and tools HR professionals can use to help re-imagine the way they manage absence and disability, visit workplacepossibilities.com.

About The Standard

The Standard is a leading provider of financial products and services, including group and individual disability insurance, group life, AD&D, dental and vision insurance, retirement plans products and services, individual annuities and investment advice. For more information about The Standard, visit www.standard.com.

The Standard is the marketing name for StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. and its subsidiaries: Standard Insurance Company, The Standard Life Insurance Company of New York, Standard Retirement Services, Inc., StanCorp Mortgage Investors, Inc., StanCorp Investment Advisers, Inc., StanCorp Real Estate, LLC, and StanCorp Equities, Inc.

1 The Impact of Employer Health and Productivity Management Practices, Integrated Benefits Institute (July 2010).

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